Boost your Winter veg!

As we continue through Winter it can be difficult to get inspired when it comes to getting some extra veggies into our diet. To give you a bit of inspiration to boost your Winter veg intake we thought you might like to try a few Love Your Gut favourites  that are tasty and good for your gut!

Love Your Gut’s – Top 3  recipes!

Simple Red Lentil Dal!


1 large onion, finely chopped

500g peeled and de-seeded butternut squash (approximately half), cut into 2cm cubes

2 tbsp sunflower oil

5 regular fresh tomatoes, chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

30g fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

2 tsp ground cumin

½ tsp ground turmeric

1 fresh, long, mild red chilli, deseeded

225g dried red lentils

100g baby spinach leaves

2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves to serve

Dal is a staple food of the Indian sub-continent. It is made from lentils that do not need pre-soaking. It is one of the fastest, most delicious and economic meals you can prepare. The beauty of this dish is it can be eaten simply or dressed up with a variety of accompaniments, for a special occasion.


Sweat the onion and butternut squash with a little oil for 10 minutes in a covered saucepan or large lidded frying pan. They should begin to caramelise. Add the tomatoes, garlic, ginger, cumin and turmeric. Cut the chilli in half lengthways and finely chop half. Add this to the saucepan. Cut the other half of the chilli into thin strips and reserve to finish the dish.

Add the red lentils and 1 litre of water to the saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat slightly and cook for 20 minutes. Add the spinach, which just needs to wilt for 2 minutes. The dal should be thick and the butternut squash tender.

Add a little oil to a frying pan and quickly sauté the strips of chilli. Serve the dal in bowls scattered with coriander and strips of chilli. Serve with brown rice or flatbread and chutney on the side.


Buckwheat Noodles with a Creamy Green Pea & Kale Sauce



40g shelled pistachio nuts

50g curly kale leaves, central stem removed and shredded

120g frozen peas, defrosted

1 small clove garlic, crushed

1 tbsp lemon juice

2 tbsp olive oil

30g nutritional yeast (vegan version)

30g basil leaves

400g soba (buckwheat) noodles

1 tsp lemon zest

Pinch of black pepper

This is a fabulous, quick comforting noodle dish made using soba noodles (buckwheat noodles) served with a vivid bright green sauce made from kale, peas, basil and a little garlic.


Carefully toast the pistachio nuts in a hot frying pan until they are just beginning to brown. Remove from the heat and roughly chop ready to sprinkle over the finished dish.

Place the peas in a large pan of boiling water and cook for 6 minutes. Add the shredded kale to the water during the last 3 minutes of cooking. The kale needs to wilt and become tender for this sauce but should not be overcooked.

Drain the peas and kale and return the cooking water to the saucepan and top it up with boiling water ready to cook the noodles.

To make the sauce:

Place half the cooked peas, cooked kale, crushed garlic, nutritional yeast – reserve a little to serve – olive oil, half of the lemon juice and 3 tbsps of cooking water into a blender.

Blitz the sauce for 30 seconds until smooth. At this point taste the sauce and adjust the flavour, adding a little more lemon juice, Parmesan cheese or cooking water for a smooth consistency.

Return the sauce to a small saucepan and add the reserved peas and keep warm over a very low heat.

To cook the noodles:

Bring the water used to cook the vegetables up to boil and throw in the noodles. Cook for 5 minutes. Drain and rinse the noodles briefly under cold water to rinse off the starch which can cause the noodles to stick together. Quickly dip the washed noodles in a bowl of boiling hot water to reheat and drain once again.

Divide the hot noodles between four warmed bowls and pour over the green sauce.

Finish the dish with a sprinkling of chopped pistachio nuts, reserved nutritional yeast, lemon zest and a pinch of black pepper.


Full English Vegan Fry Up


200g mixed small peppers

3 tbsp olive oil for drizzling

Tomato and tamarind ketchup

1 banana shallot, finely chopped

40g fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

2 tbsp tamarind paste (available form large supermarkets)

400g tin chopped tomatoes

1 tsp of palm sugar

Avocado and black bean mash

1 large ripe avocado, mashed

200g black beans, crushed slightly

squeeze of lemon

½ clove garlic, crushed

1 tsp cumin, ground

200g wild mushrooms, brushed clean and roughly chopped

200g spinach, washed and roughly chopped


Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas mark 6. Place the peppers on a roasting tray and drizzle over a little of the olive oil. Roast for 20 minutes or until the skins begin to blister and turn brown. Remove from the oven.

To make the ketchup. Drizzle a little more of the olive oil in a pan, add the chopped shallot and sweat until soft. Add the grated ginger and tamarind paste to the pan and cook gently for 2 minutes before adding the chopped tomatoes and palm sugar. Simmer for 20 minutes until the sauce is thick. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

While the ketchup cooks make the avocado mash. Simply mix the mashed avocado with the black beans, lemon, garlic and cumin to form a rough paste.

Place the mushrooms in another pan with a drizzle of olive oil. Cook over a moderate heat for 5 minutes or until the mushrooms are soft. Move the mushrooms to one side of the pan, add the spinach and cook until it wilts.

Serve the mushrooms, spinach, avocado and black bean mash with the tomato and tamarind ketchup. This would be lovely served with fresh toast.

Recipes by Dr Joan Ransley for Love Your Gut – see more recipes here